Australian multi-award winning company RapCo is partnering with Harvey Norman, Australia’s biggest furniture retailer to reduce the use of massive plastic bags in the Furniture & Bedding industry.

Plastic bags used to wrap sofas and mattresses can be one thousand times heavier and have over 300 times* the surface area of the average shopping bag.  Harvey Norman uses hundreds of thousands of these bags every year to deliver floorstock and do warehouse transfers and now RapCo is providing a better way.

“It’s a win, win, win situation” said Andrew Hurst, the CEO of RapCo and the inventor of the Sofa and Mattress Raps (their name for the bags).

“The retailer wins as it costs less, the customer wins as it protects their furniture and the environment wins.  Actually the environment wins in a couple of ways, first of all there is so much less waste as the Raps can be used hundreds of times, second there is the energy saved, each bag uses the equivalent of driving a car 100kms**.  Also there is all the oil, (plastic is derived from petroleum) that doesn’t need to be used. I suppose the only loser is the manufacture of the plastic bags”

RapCo was invited to the Harvey Norman trade show to demonstrate their Raps to all the Harvey Norman Furniture and Bedding proprietors from around Australia when they gather in Sydney this Wednesday & Thursday at the Showground in Homebush.

Stewart Burke Operations Manager for Harvey Norman organised a special stand at the trade show for RapCo. Katie Page, CEO of Harvey Norman was one of the first companies to sign up to the Australian Packaging Covenant Organisation (APCO) more than 15 years ago. APCO is a co-regulatory, not-for-profit organisation that partners with government and industry to reduce the harmful impact of packaging on the Australian environment.


*the average plastic shopping bag weighs 5 gms and the large plastic bags for King Mattresses and large sofas can weigh up to 5 kgs. The surface area of a large sofa bag is 10.8m2 and it is only 0.0375m2 for a shopping bag.

** Around 0.48 megajoules (MJ) of energy is consumed to make one shopping bag including the energy content of the bag (the embodied energy). Another way of considering this is that the energy consumed by driving a car one kilometre is the equivalent of manufacturing 8.7 plastic bags (Nolan-ITU 2002). As a Furniture bag can weigh 1000 times a shopping bag you can drive a car 1000/8.7 = 114km using the energy of one furniture.